EIB has stood by Greece and will keep doing so, bank president says

epa02773679 An exterior view of the European Investment Bank (EIB) Headquarters in Luxembourg, where Tajikistan's President Emomali Rahmon and Philippe Maystadt, the President of the European Investment Bank, withe their delegations met for talks, on 10 June 2011. EPA/NICOLAS BOUVY

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has remained steadfastly by Greece’s side from before the crisis, its president Werner Hoyer said during the inauguration of its offices in Athens.

The new offices, he said, also signify “a statement of intent: first and foremost, we have been here in Greece before the crisis, we have stayed during the crisis, we intend to stay, to expand and to improve into tomorrow.”

During 2017, Hoyer said, the EIB’s investment in Greece is expected to reach a record level of 2 billion euros. Among European Union member-states, he said, Greece comes third in terms of the total investments materialising through the European Fund for Strategic Investments compared to the size of the Greek economy. This is a notable performance in an economy with low investments for a long period of time.

“In designing our offices, we thought hard about how we want to work with each other, and at the end, how we want to work with you,” Hoyer noted. “We want to innovate, to promote transparency and to make sure teams collaborate with each other and work together.”

The opening was attended by Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos, who said that EIB’s total investment involvement in Greece over time has surpassed 17 billion euros. The new offices will contribute significantly to choosing the best possible financing programmes for Greece, he noted.